Newsletter for Oct. 2, 2014
NUTTER SIGNS POT BILL
Mayor Michael Nutter signs a bill decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana, making Philadelphia the largest city in the U.S. to do so. Via Instagram user@imyourkid.
ARSON RULED AT HOME OF COOPER CEO, WIFE; OFFICIALS PROBE DEATHS
John Sheridan and his wife Joyce were found dead in their home early Sunday morning, in a second-floor bedroom that was on fire. Now New Jersey officials are saying that fire was deliberately set — but they stopped short of saying that’s what killed the Cooper Health System CEO and his spouse. Police and prosecutors would only say Wednesday that they’re investigating, and also awaiting lab results.
A PHILLY GUY IS RUNNING THE SECRET SERVICE
You may have read about the slew of slip-ups (someone took potshots at the White House; an armed, convicted felon rode an elevator with the President; it’s insane how close this intruder got into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue) that caused the head of the Secret Service to resign. Her replacement? Joseph Clancy, a Villanova grad and Havertown native who retired from the Service in 2011 but clearly made a strong impression. Clancy, who’d been doing private security keeping protesters at arm’s length from Comcast, had been special agent in charge of the presidential protective division. He’s now interim director of the whole shebang.
BUZZFEED: SOMEONE IN PA GOV’T LOVES CORBETT AND ‘PENIS SWAYZE’
In a nifty bit of cyber-sleuthing, Buzzfeed‘s Andrew Kaczynski noted that someone connected to the Web via the IP address that hosts the state government site PA.gov has been weirdly active editing Wikipedia. Of note: This user made flattering edits to GOP Gov. Tom Corbett‘s page in 2012. This unnamed amateur Internet historian also changed now-deceased actor Patrick Swayze‘s first name to “Penis.” (And, for good measure, gave him the middle name “balls.”) Buzzfeed notes that the crotch-y Swayze edits took place in 2007, while Democrat Ed Rendell was governor.
WHERE SJP HUNG OUT IN PHILLY
Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica Parker was in town to scope locations before hitting the small screen in the TV series based on Daily News reporters Wendy Ruderman and Barbara Laker‘s book, Busted. After Instagramming a pic from 30th Street Station, the actress hit the DN‘s Page 1 meeting, the actress and the reporters headed out to Kensington, where much of the book is set, Molly Eichel reports.
TO DO: THE NEW SCHUYLKILL BANKS BOARDWALK
WHAT: The new extension of the Schuylkill River trail opens today
WHERE: The Schuylkill Banks between Locust and South Streets
WHEN: The big, Mayor Nutter-led-ribbon-cutting-ceremony is at 11:30 AM; then, everyone will “promenade.”
HOW MUCH: Free
BILLY PENN LIKES
THE NATION: HOW TO DESTROY A PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM
City Paper writer Dan Denvir‘s new story in The Nation tracks what happened when education reformers took over elements of public education in the city — and how the deck is now stacked against students who stay in public, non-charter schools. “In fact, the basic structure of school financing in Philadelphia is rigged to benefit these privately managed companies,” Denvir writes. “Public-school money follows students when they move to charter schools, but the public schools’ costs do not fall by the same amount.”
THE READING TERMINAL MARKET IS A TOP-10 GREAT PUBLIC SPACE
Maybe it’s DiNic’s sandwiches; maybe it’s Bassett’s ice cream; maybe it’s the Famous 4th Street Cookies. But the Reading Terminal Market — home to all those amazing foods, among a slew of others — was named one of the Top 10 Great Public Spaces Wednesday by the American Planning Association. The Terminal’s general manager says his shop won a spot on the list for three reasons: Its history, the food and the people in the market.